SMART Transportation Division New Jersey State Legislative Board Vice Chairperson Joseph Williams in early March presented a proclamation from SMART Transportation Division President Jeremy R. Ferguson, National Legislative Director Gregory Hynes and N.J. State Legislative Director Ron Sabol recognizing the efforts of Assemblyman Dan Benson in protecting our members.
Benson serves as the chair of the state General Assembly’s Transportation and Independent Authorities Committee and was instrumental in the passage and the Jan. 10 signing into law of the Motorbus and Passenger Rail Service Employee Violence Prevention Act that strengthens penalties for assaults on a motorbus or autobus operator, the operator’s supervisor or passenger rail employees.
Williams, a longtime New Jersey Transit engineer out of Local 800, who also had the honor of introducing President Joe Biden during an appearance in the state last autumn, presented the proclamation to Benson, which read, in part:
“… the New Jersey State Legislative Board of the Transportation Division of the International Association of Sheet Metal, Air, Rail and Transportation Workers on behalf of its members:
1. recognizes Assemblyman Benson’s support and his tireless contributions to the safety and well-being of transportation workers as a trusted and admirable ally to organized labor and specifically to SMART-TD and its members;
2. expresses its sincere appreciation and gratitude for Assemblyman Benson’s contributions, past and present, and offers the union’s continued support as we continue to cooperatively collaborate to improve the Garden State in the future.”
SLD Sabol emphasized the outstanding work Assemblyman Benson has done in supporting SMART-TD members and working to ensure that they can do their jobs in a safe environment.
“Assemblyman Benson put in long hours when working on the Motorbus and Passenger Rail Service Employee Violence Prevention Act, turning the bill around and building support for it in a matter of weeks,” Sabol said. “All that work paid off and led to a great success. His efforts will result in a safer environment for our members, where perpetrators of violence upon transportation workers will be punished.
“We support those who support us, and this proclamation is our way of recognizing his contribution to our membership’s safety. We are proud to know that when we have a concern that Assemblyman Dan Benson is ready and willing to listen and assist — however, whenever and wherever he can. Thank you very much, Assemblyman Benson!”